Newspaper: ECP notice issued to Imran in contempt case

Meanwhile, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) central leader Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Friday met with the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Justice Sardar Muhammad Raza and requested him to allow parliamentarians to participate in campaign of by-election NA-120, Lahore-III.

The five-member commission resumed hearing of the case here, headed by Chief Election Commissioner Justice Sardar Muhammad Raza.

The ECP bench had reserved the judgement on the maintainability of the contempt petition, filed by PTI dissident and one of the founding members Akbar Babar, after hearing arguments from the counsel for both sides for almost two hours on July 25.

While announcing the judgement, CEC rejected PTI’s objections regarding its jurisdiction and announced that the ECP had the legal right to hear the contempt case.

Representing Imran Khan before the ECP bench during last hearing, former senator Babar Awan argued that only the superior judiciary had the power to take up contempt proceedings. “If the ECP is equal to a high court, will a full-bench conduct proceedings every day?”

Initially PTI accepted the jurisdiction of the ECP to hear the contempt application.

Talking to reporters, Akbar Babar praised the ECP for exercising its constitutional right of bringing the powerful under the law.

Shahid Gondal said that senior lawyer Babar Awan had said that the ECP was not entitled to kick-start contempt proceedings.

Instead of producing the financial accounts, PTI and Imran filed an application on January 9, 2017 accusing the ECP of political bias and refused to comply with the financial document production order.

Earlier on Jan 24, the ECP had issued a contempt notice to the PTI chief over his contemptuous remarks about the ECP.

The Commission sought reply from PTI chief by 23rd of this month.